downy serviceberry
Amelanchier arborea

This common denizen of eastern and midwestern forests is known for bright white flowers proclaiming the arrival of spring. Tasty reddish-purple berries soon follow.

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Light Fall Color Water
Growth   Size

Timber Value

      Serviceberry is occasionally used for pulpwood.

Wildlife Value
      Over 40 species of birds and nearly as many mammal species relish the fruit of serviceberry.
          Attracts: birds, squirrels, chipmunks, mice, voles, foxes, black bears, elk

Regeneration methods
      Downy serviceberry is not usually a species that is deliberately regenerated. If wildlife and ornamental purposes are of interest, regeneration can be achieved by both shady or sunny conditions.

Fun facts
Serviceberry was named for its ability to bloom as soon as the ground thawed. At this time, funeral services were held by circuit riders for those who passed away during the winter. An alternative name for serviceberry, shadbush, derives from folklore correlating the flowering of the species with the running of shad in rivers. Serviceberries make wonderful pies and jams.
Amelanchier: French Provencal name for Amelanchier ovalis - amelanquier / arborea: tree-like
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2004 Virginia Tech Forestry Department, all rights reserved. Text, images, and programming by: Dr. Jeff Kirwan, Dr. John R. Seiler, John A. Peterson, Edward C. Jensen, Guy Phillips, or Andrew S. Meeks.

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